May 12, 2014, 02:34 pm
Boehner: Dem boycott won't impede
By Russell Berman
A Democratic boycott of the House Benghazi select committee won’t stop its investigation, Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) insisted on Monday.
He said a boycott would require Republicans to meet a high standard in order for the panel to be taken seriously but that it would not prevent it from moving forward.
“It will not impede the investigation,” he said during a moderated forum before the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in San Antonio, Texas. “I do think it will cause us to have to adhere to a higher standard if they don’t participate. But this is about one issue. It’s about getting to the truth of what happened on Sept. 11, 2012. That’s all it is, pure and simple.”
Boehner has appointed the seven Republican members of the panel he set up to investigate the Benghazi terrorist attack, but Democrats have yet to decide if they will participate and appoint their allotment of five members. They have said the new panel is unnecessary and politically motivated.
The Speaker said his discussions with Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) were continuing.
“I promised Ms. Pelosi that if she appoints members to this, they will be treated fairly,” he said. “We’ve been having a discussion over the last four or five days over how witnesses will be handled, how documents will be handled, just trying to come to some understanding upfront of what I mean by fairness.”
Boehner again refused to call on the National Republican Congressional Committee to stop fundraising off the Benghazi panel, a week after Democrats called that appeal for money by the committee “despicable.”
“I’m involved in this investigation. I’m not involved in what goes on in the campaign committees,” Boehner said. “All I’m trying to do is get to the truth here. Now I’ve got to believe the Democrats are fundraising off Benghazi just like we are.”
“I don’t know what the fundraising arm is doing. All I know is it’s time to get to the truth,” he added.
Boehner is the leading contributor to the NRCC and leads a monthly meeting at the Republican National Committee headquarters where members are briefed on the party’s fundraising efforts.